NOVA MEDIA PUBLISHING INC.

Covid-19: African Banana Producers Ensure Continuous Supply

27.3.2020

In the context of the health crisis linked to the Covid-19 pandemic, African banana companies have mobilized and are rigorously implementing all the health directives issued by the governments of producing countries. For the sector, the priority is to ensure a continuous supply of quality bananas to distribution centers and to guarantee the health safety of workers.

To date, despite strengthened control measures, no case of the disease has been identified. In the banana plantations and the various African port sites, the technical teams of the sector ensure scrupulous compliance with the hygiene instructions by their employees and have made available hydro-alcoholic gel in the necessary quantity. In packaging stations, hygiene measures are particularly strict, with in particular the provision of water points and disinfectant gel for the implementation of recommendation n ° 1 from the health authorities, repeated hand washing. Particular attention is paid to carriers, pilots and mechanics who are essential to the smooth running of our operations.

The industry is organizing to minimize the risk of impact on its logistics chains, to prevent additional costs or longer delivery times. All strategic stocks (cartons, packaging & phytosanitary products) have been increased to make up for any shortage in the coming weeks. Banana downstream companies must adapt to this exceptional situation requiring the efforts of all stakeholders in the value chain.

While nearly 90% of African banana production is destined for the European market, the Directorate General for Agriculture and Rural Development of the European Commission (DG AGRI) announced that the free movement of goods and goods would be maintained during the epidemic. To date, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) considers that there is no evidence that food is a route or source of disease transmission.

Faced with this exceptional health crisis, Afruibana and its members are resolutely committed to allow all African and European consumers to continue to benefit from a healthy and balanced diet of fresh fruit until the return of normal operating conditions.

Afruibana is a group of several associations of producers and exporters of fruit from Côte d'Ivoire, Cameroon and Ghana. The association carries the voice of African fruit producers to international institutions in the context of bilateral and multilateral trade negotiations. In Côte d'Ivoire, Cameroon and Ghana, the banana industries employ nearly 30,000 people and generate more than 50,000 indirect jobs. The three countries produced just over 600,000 tonnes of bananas in 2018.

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